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Brain injuries, teens and energy drinks might all be linked

Anything you eat or drink can affect your health. Some of the ways that foods and beverages might affect people aren't always immediately evident. A recent study shows that there is a link between teens who drink energy drinks and traumatic brain injuries. While the researchers in the study were able to note the connection, they were unable to prove that drinking an energy drink increases the risk of the teen suffering a TBI.

It is possible that the reason why the link seems to occur is because teens are more likely to suffer a TBI in a sports-related accident and teen athletes are more likely to drink energy drinks because of the athlete endorsements for the energy drinks. In an interesting twist, this study also shows that teens who suffered TBIs for other reasons, such as falls and fighting, also had consumed energy drinks.

Equally as disturbing as the seeming link between teens, energy drinks and TBIs is the evidence that energy drinks can affect the healing after the TBI. That means that teens who drink energy drinks, which are high in caffeine, might interfere with their bodies' ability to heal.

When a teen suffers a TBI, the effects of the TBI can be considerable because the teen's brain is still developing. The TBI can lead to behavior issues, trouble with academic performance and mental health issues. A TBI in the teen years might also lead to substance abuse issues.

Any teen who suffers a TBI might need long-term care. Seeking compensation for the accident that led to the TBI might be an option to consider if the accident was caused by the negligence or recklessness of another person.

Source: Live Science, "Energy Drinks Tied to Brain Injuries in Teens," Rachael Rettner, Sep. 16, 2015

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